Wednesday, March 31, 2010

What a Difference a Tantrum Can Make

Regular tantrum - a childish fit of rage; outburst of bad temper

Feels-like-you-are-being-bashed-over-the-head-with-a-brick tantrum - this is the type of tantrum my big boy (now 5 1/2) used to have.  We got to the 'terrible twos' and wondered what people were talking about.  It wasn't too terrible, sure he'd have a hissy fit every now and then but it certainly wasn't terrible.  Then he got to three...oh yeah...then we knew we were alive.  Tantrum city, here we come.  I don't even remember now what they were about but they would go on and on and on and on, until you felt like your brain was going to explode.  Sometimes he would cry and scream until he vomited.  The worst one lasted for 2 1/2 hours until he fell asleep and then woke up and continued it.  The day after he was born I could tell he was particular, sensitive and persistent.  Persistence can be a very good character trait, if used for good instead of evil.  When used to prolong tantrums,  Thank God he is past the tantrum stage.  He is still very persistent, but we no longer have to endure the tantrums from hell.

Almost-painless tantrum - this is the type of tantrum my little girl (who is 2 1/2) has.  She started tantrums before she was even two.  She'd throw herself on the floor, face down, and cry and scream.  Now she stomps her foot.  Where she gets that from I do not know, none of the rest of us do that, perhaps it's innate.  She'll cry, she'll scream, she'll smack me and throw things.  But it only lasts for a couple of minutes then she asks for a cuddle and a tissue and it's all over.  It's almost heaven in comparison.  I realize she hasn't hit three yet and that it could get worse, but she is just different.  The day after she was born I could tell she was particular (they're both Virgos...hence both particular), strong (she held her head up by herself at 2 days old) and a good communicator.  At 2 1/2 she is only just starting to speak, but we've never had any real difficulty understanding what she wants.

It's a tantrum kind of day today with my little girl.  It's only 11am and she's had three already.  But, as they are almost painless, it's not so bad.

What kind of tantrums do/did your kids have?  Please don't tell me they didn't have them!


  1. Wait, you mean the tantrums will someday end? Thank GOD! I have a three year old and a two year old...Both seem to be a wicked combination of your two children. You have given me hope to hold out for the day that tantrums are a thing of the past!

  2. Unfortunately,my little man has the first type. Goes on and on. Screams until he vomits. No amount of whispering, stroking, shouting back, attempted cuddles, bribery or rewards can pacify. Especially in the half hour before bed time.

    Nice to know it'll end though!

  3. Type number one here! My boy has mcmassive meltdowns over inane little things, they go on for hours. Its horrifying!

  4. Thea,
    The kids are past the tantrum stage in our house - though I still throw them most days. The most recent was Sunday when my oldest (Josh, 14yo) rang at 8.30am (he'd been at a friends, sleeping over) to say I had to pick him up...quickly.
    He and his friend had been caught at a girl's house at 4am.
    Be thankful for tantrums, it actually gets worse!

  5. Oh yep, we have them here. My daughter, now 18 mths, threw her first tantrum at 11 mths in the middle of the shops (threw herself to the ground and screamed and kicked - I was so shocked, I thought I had at least another 6 mths before she'd do that!) and they've been a regular occurrence ever since.

    She's not quite as full on with them as your son was... yet. Funny, she's a Virgo too and the funniest things set her off (like moving something she's trying to 'organise' or not letting her watch The Wiggles again).

    It's going to be a long couple of years isn't it! Sigh.

  6. We have massive tantrums here... screaming, crying, throwing things, slamming doors, irrational rages and filthy sulking. Then I stop it and have a glass of wine and feel better!! ;)

  7. I had one that very rarely had a tantrum, followed by 1 who had the long, long, long ones until she was 7ish, then 1 who did the painless type and only a few, followed by my mega mega mega tantrum thrower. I stopped at 4, that was enough - sigh.


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